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Congress created postal mess

Leonard C. Johnson, of Moscow, has been hoodwinked.

In his April 21 letter, he complains about “pre-funding of retirement benefits for 70 years” for Postal Service workers, which he says were “imposed under a union contract,” concluding it constitutes an argument against “government employee unions.”

What he apparently doesn’t realize is that this funding mandate – required of no other agency – was imposed not by the union, but upon it, by a 2006 act of Congress under the leadership of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, in a cynical attempt to bankrupt the USPS and break its union.

Johnson, and anyone else concerned, has only the last Republican-led Congress to thank for a self-created crisis.

Steven A. Wells

Spokane


 

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Editorial: Washington state lawmakers scramble to keep public in the dark

State lawmakers want to create a legislative loophole in Washington’s Public Records Act. While it’s nice to see Democrats and Republicans working together for once, it’s just too bad that their agreement is that the public is the enemy. As The Spokesman-Review’s Olympia reporter Jim Camden explained Feb. 22, lawmakers could vote on a bill today responding to a court order that the people of Washington are entitled to review legislative records.